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Friday, November 30, 2007

2008 Editors' Choice Awards

By The Editors Published in Accessories
2008 Editors' Choice Awards

Panasonic Camcorder SDR-S10

Panasonic has a knack for delivering cutting-edge camcorders, and the SDR-S10 is no exception. A small, light, water-resistant cam that's drop-protected from around four feet, the SDR-S10 is the perfect unit to add to your camera bag and use in the field. It utilizes tapeless flash memory storage in a slimmed-down body with a choice of SD/SDHC memory cards for video recording. I like the style and PDA-sized body of the unit. Plus, it's a cool cam to have around. Estimated Street Price: $400. Contact: Panasonic, (800) 211-PANA, www.panasonic.com. -SW


Datacolor Spyder3Elite

No matter where you shoot, you still need to calibrate your monitor for a color-neutral workspace. Nothing compares to the horror of prints that look nothing like the beautiful image you behold on your monitor. Enter the Datacolor Spyder3Elite, an easy-to-use calibration tool, now with a 7 detector color engine and a 27mm aperture to precisely calibrate your LCD, CRT, laptop and front projector displays. This affordable, state-of-the-art tool also calibrates your display during ambient light changes. Now there's no excuse for bad prints. You'll have total control over that elusive digital workflow. Estimated Street Price: TBA. Contact: Datacolor, (609) 924-2189, www.datacolor.com. -SW


Tamrac Velocity Sling Pack

Simply put, this great line of bags with fast and convenient access to your camera gear still carries comfortably like a backpack during travel. The Tamrac Velocity Sling Pack easily accommodates your pro digital body with an eight-inch zoom lens attached. The foam-padded dividers reinforced with rigid plastic for extra support are a smart touch, and the unit's design allows for easy access to your gear. Simply swing the bag around to your front, and the aptly named Quick Flip Top allows you to grab your camera and take the shot. Tamrac's Modular Accessory System also allows you to customize the bag to your liking. Estimated Street Price: Varies by model. Contact: Tamrac, (800) 662-0717, www.tamrac.com. -SW


ErgoRest Tabletop Tripod

Small, effective and strong give me ample reasons to grab an ErgoRest MultiTripod. This light, versatile unit has obvious advantages as a tabletop stand, but its added ability to attach to a car window or work as a shoulder and chest support for long, heavy lenses makes it a genuinely useful tripod. Macro photographers also will love the unit, plus it transports easily because of its small size. Strength is another consideration you need not worry about—it's made of solid steel and coated in polyurethanes. Estimated Street Price: $100. Contact: HP Marketing Corp., (800) 735-4373, www.hpmarketingcorp.com. -SW


Canon EOS 40D

I own EOS 10D, 20D and 30D cameras, so obviously I like the family. Excellent image quality and AF performance are the main attractions. But I change lenses a lot in the field, and so always seem to have dust on the sensors. The new 40D resolves this problem with a self-cleaning sensor unit. Of course, that's not all Canon has added to the new EOS 40D: There's a 10.1-megapixel image sensor, a three-inch LCD monitor with live-view capability, 6.5 fps shooting, a DIGIC III image processor, 14-bit A/D conversion and more—all for $100 less than I paid for my 30D! Estimated Street Price: $1,299. Contact: Canon, (800) OK-CANON, www.usa.canon.com. -MS
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